Wilder Celebrates Debut Release, Derby Day

Plus, Plastic Ants release vinyl version of their debut, Ellery play book launch concert and Automagik delay EP

0 Comments · Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Country/Americana group Wilder issue its debut EP with a Kentucky Derby-themed release party, Plastic Ants celebrate the vinyl release of their debut album, Ellery hosts a book launch party in honor of singer Tasha Golden's poetry collection and Automagik premiere a new single/video but delay planned EP release.   

Ben Knight, Coconut Milk and More New Local Releases

Plus, news on new efforts from Jane Decker and The Rubber Knife Gang and the 'Bootleggers & Hustlers Volume One' compilation

0 Comments · Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Cincinnati area artists Ben Knight & the Welldiggers, Coconut Milk, Jane Decker and The Rubber Knife Gang celebrate new releases this week. Plus, Arnold's and Neltner Small Batch collaborate on a new local music compilation set for release on Record Store Day.  

MidPoint Indie Summer Lineup Showcases Locals and Much More

Plus, veteran local singer/songwriter Bob Cushing releases 'Troubadour Songs'

0 Comments · Wednesday, April 22, 2015
The 2015 MidPoint Indie Summer series, featuring free concerts every Friday on Fountain Square all summer long, spotlights the local music scene and brings in more notable national acts than ever before. Plus, veteran Cincinnati musician Bob Cushing celebrates his latest release, Troubadour Songs, this Saturday.   

DIY Music and Culture Fest Debuts in Over-the-Rhine

Plus, Hot for Alice releases its full-length debut and The Warsaw Falcons play the Woodward

0 Comments · Wednesday, April 8, 2015
The first Zines, Screens & Screams Fest, a celebration of DIY music and culture, comes to Main Street in Over-the-Rhine this Friday and Saturday. Plus, local Alt Pop Rock band Hot for Alice celebrates its debut album release, Sirens, and The Warsaw Falcons are back and playing this weekend with longtime friends The Tigerlilies and JetLab.  

Old City Brings Back the Cassingle

Plus, Tunes & Blooms, Walk the Moon and Brian Newman return to Cincy, The Chris Comer Space Dub Sextet debuts and local acts unite for 80’s Pop Rocks benefit

0 Comments · Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Cincinnati Indie Rock trio Old City celebrates the release of The Sun is My Light, the "Tunes & Blooms" concert series returns to the Cincinnati Zoo, the 80's Pop Rocks benefit celebrates ’80s music and raises funds for charity, Brian Newman returns from NYC for a rare local show, Jazz pianist debuts Chris Comer Space Dub Sextet and Walk the Moon plays sold out show at Bogart's.   
by Nick Grever 03.27.2015
Posted In: Local Music, Live Music, Music News at 10:05 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Beyond Idol Chatter: The Music/Day Job Balancing Act

Post American Idol, Cincinnati’s Jess Lamb scales back but continues her teaching job

For some musicians, their 9-to-5 is little more than a means to an end. Pizza and guitar strings don’t pay for themselves, after all. Others take pride in their work, both on stage and in the “real world,” but view them as two parts of a whole.But for Jess Lamb, her twin identities as a musician and teacher are deeply intertwined. She works hard in both professional avenues and has put a large amount of effort into maintaining them, even during her post-American Idol influx of activities. It’s a balancing act with some unexpected complications that she is still learning to walk gracefully. But for Lamb, there is no other choice.“I think that the public has seen me as a teacher and I don’t want my name to be tainted by this other persona, this other career, this other life. So I don’t want to be slosh drunk. I don’t want to be like Jim Morrison in my experimenting with life. But at the same time there’s a whole other vibe with playing in venues, playing in bars and it is very different from the teacher thing,” Lamb explains.Before Idol, Lamb’s work as a musician and an ESL teacher were more easily separated. Nowadays, with the added exposure that Idol has brought to her and her late-night performances around town, she has had to go to greater lengths to protect the sanctity of both. A shot of Jameson may not be thrown back with the same careless abandon as a few months prior and photo ops are utterly devoid of the counter-cultural staples of, say, a middle finger or devil horns. This isn’t to say that Lamb was or is a reckless partier at night and a quiet bookworm during the day.Rather, what happens at night can bleed into the daylight hours and her work in one aspect of life can’t compromise the other. She has to take into account who her new audience members may be and how they learned of Lamb. Being a teacher requires maintaining professionalism at all times. When a teacher is shown on national television, keeping that even-headed mentality all day and all night becomes even more important.Considering all the time that Lamb has spent on her music after her Idol run, some may wonder why she doesn’t put the teaching on hold for the time being. Between the Idol recaps she does regularly for Fox 19 since leaving the show, the myriad interviews, the residencies at Japps in Over-the-Rhine and Jags in West Chester (as well as other shows), the studio work and all the other opportunities that have arisen, finding time for teaching is pretty much impossible at this point. In fact, Lamb has cut down her teaching work to roughly four hours a week, doing basic lesson planning and similar activities. But she still carves out time for her teaching for a very important purpose.“I don’t do it for the money, it’s not sustaining me. I do it for my spirit. It’s for something that feels important, I don’t know that what I’m doing all the time feels important,” Lamb says.She views being a teacher and an entertainer as two professions with two different contributions to society. Music and teaching both give something back to the community at large, but she feels that teaching impacts the public on a much larger scale. While singing in a smoky bar reaches a small amount of people, teaching has a much larger reach.Ultimately, Lamb is a musician and teacher in equal measure. At this point, the music is taking more of her time, but she is determined to not let it take all of it.“I don’t want to cancel out one or the other with a teacher persona that’s too square or a Rock star persona that’s too crazy and unstable,” Lamb says.For Lamb, finding a mix of her two professions and passions is an ever-present struggle. When Idol rocketed her music to the forefront, she has had to constantly work to balance it out with activities that are equally as fulfilling. It hasn’t been an easy process by any means but one that she sees as absolutely necessary. Just don’t be offended if she turns down a shot of whiskey next time you run into her in the Main St. district.Nick Grever is checking in periodically with Cincinnati-based American Idol contest Jess Lamb about her post-Idol life. Check out previous "Beyond Idol Chatter" posts here. Visit jesslamb.com for music, show dates and more.

LiViD, Moxie Band and More Locals Celebrate New Releases

Plus, Ray's Music Exchange reunites for fourth annual show Saturday

0 Comments · Wednesday, March 25, 2015
LiVid, The Moxie Band, The Grove and Buffalo Wabs and the Price Hill Hustle celebrate new releases this weekend. Plus, Ray's Music Exchange returns for fourth annual reunion show and announces new offshoot band Rays.  

She & Them

Post Rock provocateurs Us, Today flip the script on their improv structure for the composed and concussive 'TenEnemies'

0 Comments · Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Cincinnati trio Us, Today is taking things to the next level with the new full-length release 'TenEnemies.'  

The Happy Maladies Showcase Collaborations with ‘Must Love Cats’

Plus, Go Go Buffalo and Dead Man String Band also celebrate new releases this week

0 Comments · Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Adventurous Cincinnati Chamber Folk quartet The Happy Maladies unveil their stunning Must Love Cats project, featuring compositions from various outside composers. Plus, one-man-show Dead Man String Band celebrates the release of the new full-length I and heavy Psych Rock crew Go Go Buffalo unleashes its debut EP, It Ain't Worth It.  

Buffalo Killer Goes Truly Solo on New LP

Plus, new release news about Bad Veins, Ronnie Verl & the Wallbangers and Sean Geil

0 Comments · Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Buffalo Killers' Andy Gabbard gets set to release his debut solo effort, Fluff. Plus, Bad Veins remake their second album as The Mess Remade (releasing next week), Ronnie Verl & the Wallbangers celebrate their new album, Mostly Drinking Songs, and The Tillers' Sean Geil is on schedule to release four albums this month.